November 19: Nancy Sinatra records “These Boots Are Made For Walkin’”

The accessory that went hand in hand with the miniskirt were knee-high, vinyl go-go boots, popularized by Barbara Streisand in the August edition of Vogue. Designed by the usual suspects of Courrèges, Saint Laurent, and Mary Quant, in the UK they were called “kinky boots,” since they had originally been worn by dominatrixes in the underground S&M scene.

Dancers on TV music shows like Hullaballoo and Shindig wore them, as did the singer of We Five (“You Were On My Mind”). But they were immortalized by the track Nancy Sinatra recorded on November 19 in collaboration with songwriter/producer Lee Hazelwood. For “These Boots are Made For Walkin’,” Hazelwood encouraged her to sing like a “14-year-old girl who goes with truck drivers,” and the result was one of the greatest anthems of women’s liberation.

After vowing to use her boots to walk all over the guy, Sinatra followed it up by redeeming The Beatles’ “Run For Your Life.” In the song John Lennon warns his “little girl” that she’d better tow the line; Sinatra flipped the song so she was bullying her “little boy.”

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